Cover of Le Barbare (2002 Lombard Editions)
Art by Grzegorz Rosiński
|Created by|| Jean Van Hamme |
|Publisher|| Lombard Editions (French) |
Cinebook Ltd (English)
|Formats||Original material for the series has been published as a strip in the comics anthology(s) Tintin magazine and a set of graphic novels.|
|Publication date||1977 – present|
|Title(s)||See: Collected editions|
|The series has been reprinted, at least in part, in Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, German, Greek, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish, and Turkish.|
Thorgal is a Franco-Belgian fantasy comic book series by the Belgian writer Jean Van Hamme and the Polish graphic artist Grzegorz Rosiński. It combines several themes and legends, ranging from Norse mythology and Atlantean fantasy to science fiction, and such genres as dark drama, horror and adventure stories.
The comic first appeared in serial form in Tintin magazine in 1977, and has been published in hardcover volumes by Le Lombard from 1980 on. Translations exist in English and many other languages. In 2002, it was adapted as an adventure video game, Thorgal: Curse of Atlantis , by Cryo Interactive Entertainment. Thorgal is critically acclaimedand one of the most popular French language comics, with more than 11 million Thorgal books in print. There are presently three ongoing successful spin-off series, in addition to the continuation of the main Thorgal adventures.
|Vilnia||Kahaniel de Valnor||Olgava||Varth (Ogotai)||Haynee||Gandalf the Mad|
|Manthor||Kriss de Valnor||Thorgal Aegirsson||Aaricia||Bjorn Gandalfson|
|Aniel de Valnor||Jolan||Louve|
After of being lost at sea, the ship of Viking leader Leif Haraldson suddenly finds its way home, guided by a mysterious light in the fog. To the supersticious Vikings, the light is seen as a sign from the gods. Once on shore, they find a sort of capsule, which appears to be the source of the mysterious light. Leif opens the capsule and finds a newborn baby boy. He names the child Thor-gal Aegirs-son, after Thor, the Norse God of Thunder, and Aegir, the ruler of the sea, because he considers Thorgal to be a gift from the Gods. Leif takes Thorgal under his care as his adoptive son.
As Thorgal grows up, he is curious about his origins and often ostracized by his peers for not being a "real" Viking. On his sixth birthday, Leif gives him two strange artifacts taken from the capsule he was found in. One is a jewel made from "the metal that doesn't exist". The jewel brings Thorgal on his first adventure, and binds his fate forever with that of Aaricia (his future wife). When Thorgal is twelve, the other gift prompts him to visit an old wiseman, who reveals to Thorgal his origins and true identity. He tells him that he's one of the last survivors of a group of technologically advanced space-farers who came to the planet in search of new energy sources. His people have great supernatural powers like changing the molecular composition of matter with their mind; powers that Thorgal himself seems not to have. Thorgal learns about his real parents and grandfather, and the events that preceded his birth. The old man decides to erase Thorgal's memory of their encounter and the knowledge he just learned, believing that it will be better for Thorgal to grow up as a "normal" Viking boy with no supernatural powers. Thorgal, however, continues to grow up as curious and conflicted about his true identity as ever.
Soon after this event Leif Haraldson dies and Gandalf the Mad is chosen as his successor. Gandalf repeatedly tries to get rid of Thorgal, because - as he constantly reminds everyone - Thorgal is an outsider and not of Viking blood. In reality, Gandalf feels threatened because Thorgal is Leif's heir. In the meantime, Thorgal's relationship with Aaricia, Gandalf's daughter, develops and strengthens. While her wishes do not have much influence on her father, she is able to save Thorgal from certain death (by her father's hand) through her determination and ingenuity.
The first album of the series starts some years later, when Thorgal is already an adult, and Gandalf devises a plan to kill him after realizing how deep the love his daughter has for Thorgal really is.
The albums consist of several story arcs and many stand-alone stories.
The 29th volume - "Sacrifice" - was the last one written by Jean Van Hamme. This episode centers around Thorgal escaping the curse of Odin and finding peace in the only home he knows: the Viking village of his adopted father. In order to save his father's life, however, Jolan must strike a bargain with a half-God and enter his services upon his family's return to Midgard. The story ends with a somber but understanding farewell between Thorgal and Jolan which Thorgal simply defines as the inevitable way a grown child must take: to set out on his own path in life.
In the Danish version of the series, the albums were released in a different order, starting with the albums of Thorgals youth.The first album in the series La Magicienne Trahie is number 22 in the Danish series.
In Denmark number 22-23 (1-2) were first published by the publisher Interpresse with the special name 'Cormak', probably to imitate the popular series Conan . Soon the name were changed back to "Thorgal" because Carlsen Comics took over the series.
Subsequent volumes were written by Yves Sente. These albums initially focus on Jolan rather than Thorgal.
Thorgal, Child of the Stars was published by Donning Company Publishers in 1986 with ISBN 0-89865-501-3.
Cinebook Ltd has begun reprinting the series
0. The Betrayed Sorceress ( ISBN 9781849184434) - Collects La Magicienne Trahie and L'Ile des Mers gelées [1 and 2])
The 2008 Cinebook edition of The Land of Qa was edited to remove a woman's naked breast (page 27).
In 2002 Le Lombard published a video game for Microsoft Windows, entitled Thorgal: Curse of Atlantis and developed by Cryo Interactive Entertainment.
In 2016 there is announced that comic is going to be a series directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. The script was started in 2017 and it stands as in development in 2018 on imdb.
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